Flying to Canada's northern territories can be quite the feat. It often involves long hours in the air, stops at various airports along the way, and sometimes technology malfunctions that complicate the system.
For one man his trip to Inuvik, Northwest Territories turned into a 14-hour long adventure when he accidentally got on the wrong plane and went almost 3000km in the other direction.
I just boarded the wrong airplane and flew to the wrong destination. Can’t believe it.— Christopher Paetkau (@ChrisPaetkau) August 13, 2018
Where will I end up next?#arctic #firstair #yellowknife #airtravel @CBCManitoba #winnipeg pic.twitter.com/DfZYa4ATjW
Christopher Paetkau is a wildlife photographer from Winnipeg. He told the CBC was attempting to fly to Inuvik after making it to Calgary and then to Yellowknife. From there he was supposed to fly on to Inuvik but a system failure seriously messed up his plans.
The computer system in Yellowknife was down meaning flight crews had to manually check in passengers and get them to the right spot. According to Paetkau, it looked like three different planes were taking off from around gate 4 so when he made it to the tarmac he wasn't entirely sure which one he was supposed to be on.
He ended up on one plane and asked the flight attendant when he boarded if it was going to Inuvik. She said yes but she thought he was joking because the person who boarded just before him jokingly asked if they were going to Hawaii.
The combination of the joke mix up and Paetkau not paying attention to the pilot's announcements at the beginning of the flight meant that they were halfway to Iqaluit before he realized he was on the wrong plane.
Kind of incredible how this happened. But I’m heading back to #Yellowknife now after a tour of the #arctic. Decided to make the best of it... so did the @FirstAir captain and crew. We’re buds now! pic.twitter.com/qVECX6OKeQ— Christopher Paetkau (@ChrisPaetkau) August 13, 2018
While some people would be mad about the situation, especially since he had asked at the start if it was the right flight, in true Canadian fashion Paetkau was very understanding and said he even bonded with the flight crew who took great care of him and made sure he had food and a place to stay.
Paetkau eventually made it to Inuvik, where he will stay until the end of the month.